ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE (ATAC)
The Assistive Technology Advisory Committee (ATAC) is established pursuant to Section 4(c)(2) of the Assistive Technology Act of 2004 (AT Act). AT Act programs all have a public agency that serves as the Lead Entity. The Department of Rehabilitation (DOR) is the Lead Entity for California and controls and administers the AT Act funds, submits the application, and implements other duties required of AT Act programs.
The AT Act describes the requirement to establish an advisory council "to provide consumer-responsive, consumer-driven advice to the State for, planning of, implementation of, and evaluation of the activities carried out through the grant, including setting the measurable goals described in subsection (d)(3)."
Purpose and Responsibilities of the ATAC
The primary functions of the advisory council are:
To serve as ambassadors of the AT Act program
To assist with the development of the three-year State Plan for Assistive Technology (SPAT) submitted to the Administration on Community Living, US Department of Health and Human Services
To assist the program with implementing and evaluating the activities identified in the SPAT and suggesting amendments, if needed, based on the Annual Progress Report (APR)
To provide a stakeholder voice about issues related to access to, and the acquisition of, assistive technology in California
To provide input to other agencies and/or partners in order to improve AT services within California
Responsibilities of members include:
Attend and actively participate in all ATAC meetings;
Serve as a liaison between the State’s AT Act program and entity they represent (including state agencies and the community as a whole), promoting and sharing the State’s AT programs' mission and resources;
Participate in identification and exploration of new opportunities to increase access to, and acquisition of, assistive technology devices and services, especially those involving partnerships with diverse stakeholders;
Assist in educating others about AT devices and services through the state AT Act program (and other resources as appropriate);
Participate in reviewing the State program's efforts and achievements of its goals; and,
Support the establishment/maintenance/improvement of state and federal laws and policies that promote access to and acquisition of assistive technology.
In accordance with Section 4(c)(2) of the AT Act, the advisory council is to be a consumer-majority body, that is, with at least 51 percent individuals who are people with disabilities who are users of assistive technology devices and services. The AT Act prescribes a set of representatives from agencies and organizations, including:
A representative of the designated State agency as defined in section 7 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (e.g. the vocational rehabilitation (VR) agency);
A representative of the State agency for individuals who are blind, if such an agency is separate;
A representative of a State center for independent living under title VII of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973;
A representative of the State workforce investment board established under section 111 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; and
A representative of the State educational agency as defined in section 9101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
Members of the ATAC shall reflect the diversity of California "with respect to race, ethnicity, types of disabilities across the age span," as well as the types of AT devices and services used by its citizens with disabilities.
In addition, the AT program may appoint additional representatives from other state agencies, public agencies, or private organizations, as long as the consumer majority is maintained. As the California AT program recruits consumer members and makes additional appointments, care is taken to maintain a council that reflects the diversity of California with respect to race, ethnicity, types of disabilities across the age span, and types of AT devices and services used by its citizens with disabilities.
Interested in Becoming an ATAC Member?
The DOR Director-appointed ATAC consists of a diverse membership interested in, and representative of, Californians who are persons with disabilities who use assistive technology or are family members of persons with disabilities who use assistive technology. The DOR Director appoints representatives of specified entities to a three-year term.
All qualified applicants are urged to apply. If interested, please see the instructions below and complete the attached application.
How to apply for appointment by the DOR Director to serve on the ATAC:
Department of Rehabilitation
Attn: AT Program, Karl Ortega
721 Capitol Mall
Sacramento, CA 95814
Questions? Please email Karl.Ortega@dor.ca.gov.